AG seeks probe of National Grid lockout

Attorney General Maura Healey is asking on regulators to review alleged pipeline safety violations, service quality issues and potential added costs of National Grid’s lockout of 1,250 United Steel Workers since late June.

In directions sent yesterday to your Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities demanding your analysis and public hearings, Healey’s office says oversight should be applied into how a organization is getting by having its workforce over the sidelines.

“As the lockout continues into its third month, apparently increasingly unlikely that replacement workers and managers can continue to adopt these additional tasks and shifts without significant disruption,” Rebecca L. Tepper, assistant attorney general in charge of energy and telecommunications, wrote during the letter.

The letter demands a search into whether state and federal regulations will be followed along with an intensive consider the greater than 50 safety complaints filed by way of the union because lockout started June 25.

The complaints include equipment not being utilised properly, lax oversight, improperly installed equipment, safety equipment problems along with other potential violations of company protocol or safety laws.

Healey’s office also wants to know whether industry is buying services inside their rates that aren’t being provided while in the lockout, whether safety inspections, leak surveys, gas main replacements or client service hookups.

And more, the workplace is seeking an accounting for any costs (or savings) with the company over the lockout plus an answer for whether ratepayers or shareholders could possibly get the check (or check).

Regulators, the AG’s office wrote, “should put the Company on realize that shareholders, not ratepayers, will probably pay any incremental costs of the lockout.”

National Grid spokeswoman Christine Milligan says the firm has completed 18,000 jobs within the 12 weeks of your lockout without incident. Even the company said it had not been intending to transfer “any unreasonable” expenses associated with the lockout to ratepayers.

“I am in frequent experience of the DPU, apprising the agency of our safety procedures, addressing any concerns and reviewing our safety compliance,” Milligan says. “Just like we might with any workforce — union or otherwise not — we take appropriate action should any violations be discovered. We’re fully positive about the task which our continuation workforce has performed and may carry on and perform until this is resolved.”

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